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  • Writer's pictureSylvain Lupari

DIGITAL HORIZONS: Pegasus - 30 Years of Digital Horizons (2018)

“It's time to reveal the music of Digital Horizons to the world of EM lovers, especially those of sequencer-based style of the 80-90's”

1 Pegasus 12:14 2 Tianma 8:57

3 Endless Scenery (DH30 Mix) 9:50

4 Drinking at Hippocrene 6:31

5 Plasma (DH30 Mix) 4:28

6 Chrysaor 7:40

(DDL 49:53) (V.F.)

(80-90's Berlin School)

How is it possible that Digital Horizon's music could have been hide to the various media of the Internet and EM spheres for so long? And this is not because the project of the English musician Justin Ludford has been put on the hold, like I thought, in the recent years. Oh no, since the Digital Horizons Bandcamp site lists a pretty huge series of EP's and albums between 2013 and the release of the very good Ghost Station in March 2018. PEGASUS - 30 Years of Digital Horizons is a short compilation of 6 titles and of almost 50 minutes from its long career started at the end of the 80's. It makes me think that only 50 minutes over 30 years of music is more a sign that the career of the one-man- band has had more downs than ups. But no matter, it's the present days that seems to count for Justin Ludford who made us discover with Ghost Station and finally this compilation a door to his wide universe where the sampling of good titles is still very subjective. But one thing is certain, this PEGASUS - 30 Years of Digital Horizons is a download to put between the ears

Tangerine Dream is the main influences in Justin Ludford's music, and it's with these layers filled by those 80-90's tonalities of the German trio that this collection opens. Pegasus seems to be a new composition that begins its stowage towards our ears with a series of synth pads as delicate as silk sheets which float and undulate under the caresses of an azure wind. The movement is very ethereal and lasts nearly 3 minutes where perfumes of The Keep caress our eardrums. A rhythm emerges from this effect of abyssal depth with a movement of a sequencer which goes into attack mode. The keys congregate on a conveyor which works by jerks, developing an atypical structure but which is inspired by Poland and the acrobatic rhythms found in The Park Is Mine. The title separates well its phases of rhythms with brief ambiospheric passages so as not to make its structure intolerable in the long run. Drums also support this structure of rhythm which at times breathes of simplicity. A very good title for sequencer lovers. Tianma is a more intense title with a beautiful emotional envelope and especially more musical than than Pegasus. From ambient, the music evolves with a sequencer in mode ambient rhythm and synth riffs always in mode TD. Dramatic effects, synth spinning blades with an apocalyptic effect and a brief melodious wreck tinted of nostalgia adorn the progressions of an ambient rhythm towards an electronic rock spiced up by percussions and metallic clapping of hands. We understand that Endless Scenery and Plasma are two titles that have been remixed with a contemporary flavor. The first is a floating title inspired by sequencer movements of Gert Emmens' tales. There is an emotional gradation, as well as an ambient passage with elven voice effects. Plasma is more in the genre of movie music with good dramatic effects in its development. Drinking at Hippocrene is a bit like that but with lifeless rhythms and percussion/sequencer movements that work in phases in a nice stellar decor. Chrysaor closes this compilation with a nice structure of rhythm full of dramatic cinematic effects. The movement of the rhythm is structured by a sequencer whose ample oscillating lines float under a dense layer of effects and stationary synth lines.

Still strange that there is so little information and news about Digital Horizons in the entire Web universe! His discography is not even available in Discogs and his name is totally absent from the prestigious library of information that is the Encyclopedia of Electronic Music. I simply don't get it! But no matter, this compilation deserves to be discovered by the fans of good sequencing patterns and of this approach a bit cold of the Berlin School from the 80-90's. The music is good with impulses proper to Justin Ludford. To discover…

Sylvain Lupari (August 18th, 2018) ***¾**

Available on Digital Horizons' Bandcamp

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